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World famous Uncle Joe's launches Mint Ball gin

Gareth Winnard, Antony Winnard, John Winnard and Tony Callaghan
Gareth Winnard, Antony Winnard, John Winnard and Tony Callaghan
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The tipple of the moment combined with Wigan’s most famous confectionary is proving a massive hit.

The first bottles of Uncle Joe’s Mint Ball gin went on sale at the borough’s Fifteens bars in the last few days, and customers can’t get enough of it.

Three of the borough’s more colourful companies have teamed up to catch the crest of a commercial wave which has seen rocketing sales of gin across the country.

The Wily Fox brewery and distillery at Martland Mill went into partnership last summer with Mint Ball-makers William Santus and Co to create and new Uncle Joe’s Wigan Gin.

And now they have started to sell it in Tony Callaghan’s 19 InnTheBar outlets after months of perfecting the recipe.

Mr Callaghan said: “The response has been nothing short of phenomenal. We put it on sale with no advertising and everyone wants some.

“Social media went beserk. As soon as it was mentioned on Facebook there were 118,000 hits within hours.

“So far 500 bottles have been made but I reckon they will be gone in a couple of weeks at the rate we are going so it’ll be a busy production line.

“At the moment you can only buy drinks in the bar but eventually the plan is to sell bottles too.

“And I’m not surprise it’s selling well - it tastes fantastic!”

Santus’s has already had success with an Uncle Joe’s vodka and has been used in ice cream before now, so the sweet is proving its versatility.

Co-director John Winnard said: “Williams Santus was a strict Methodist so he wouldn’t have approved with what we are doing!

“But after the success of the vodka, and given the explosion in interest in gin of late, it seemed a logical next step."